In an ever-changing world with greater environmental awareness and attention to the environment, industrial hemp with all its positive attributes and potential products could well be a valuable agricultural commodity.
Development of new markets and manufacturing could greatly benefit rural economies.
Until the scale of production increases significantly, efficient mechanisation for harvesting and processing is explored, and value adding systems are established (industry development), the economics of industrial hemp production and marketing in NSW will remain unknown.
The majority of industrial hemp in the world is grown or processed using low mechanisation and high labour inputs. In NSW the industry is likely to be broadacre, mechanised and capital intensive to achieve viable gross margins.
Identifying suitable growing locations and streamlining farming and processing systems would also be useful initiatives for development of the industry.
The information contained in this publication is based on knowledge and understanding at the time of writing (July 2008).
Check for updates of this Primefact at: www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/primefacts
Source: NSW Department of Primary Industries